After slogging through many problems the last decade, I realized that much of my time was spent worrying about what might happen in the future and agonizing over the past.
It occurred to me one day that, when I was consciously present in the moment, I was happy. I knew and took solace in the fact, that just for this moment, now, all was well. Not one minute ago, but right now. I was thinking about this while vacationing in Hawaii; there I was sitting by a beautiful lagoon, surrounded by coconut palms, and it was paradise EXCEPT for my thinking! Imagine my surprise when I realized I was replaying an old story about an event that had hurt my feelings. Where was I? Was I enjoying my Hawaii vacation OR reliving the past via a painful memory that was over 30 years old? What is more peaceful? Being present and truly enjoying the afternoon by the ocean OR rehashing a miserable story that was long over?
I played with this notion for weeks. If I felt an old, charged emotion come creeping in, then I would say to myself, “Well, that was then, but this is now.” Then I would gently bring my focus back to where I was at the moment. I’d say, “I’m sitting here on my back porch now… The birds are singing… The family is okay… I’m healthy… And right now, all is well.” Or, “I’m on the way to handle a family emergency. Right now I’m centered and balanced. Everything is fine right now.” Even during emergencies I have found myself saying to myself “ right now help is coming and, at this moment, all is well.”
When we can take life one moment at a time, it’s more peaceful and much simpler. Staying present in the now, enables us to respond from a place of peace and not react in fear or anger. Yes, it is a challenge to stay calm when all around us is chaos or when something upsetting is happening. Staying in the moment helps to keep the balance. One good way is to take a deep breath or a couple of deep breaths, and step back and observe what’s happening. Just breathe and relax.
For me, if I’m not in the NOW zone, then I’m not where I want to be.
The past is history,
Tomorrow is a mystery,
and today is the present… A gift.
Let’s all go in peace. There is no time like the present… and it is now.
Copyright ©2014 Lynn Davis Van Gundy • All rights reserved